What can we expect for snowstorms this March?

By: Kevin Hurd Email
By: Kevin Hurd Email

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- They are the sights and sounds we have come to expect in December, January, and February.

Snow blowers, snowplows, and shovels.

But just when you thought all of it should be behind us by the time we get to March, think again.

"This year we've had a much busier winter, there's a lot more snow on the ground, there's also a lot more cold air in place," said Matt Hoffman, Skywarn 13 Meteorologist.

Turns out March can be one of the biggest months for snowstorms. All you have to do is go back to the record books.

On March 18, 1951, 10.5 inches fell. On March 21, 1992, 10.7 inches fell. And on March 19, 2005, about 13.5 inches of snow fell in Eau Claire. And the list continues.

"It's pretty common to see kind of heavier snowfalls in March, usually it's 3rd behind January and December," Hoffman added.

It is that transition to spring that Hoffman says helps create storms like this.

"You're going from winter to spring, so you have a lot of cold air and warm air close together, and that's how you get these storm systems that can dump a lot of snow," he said.

But what about February? You would think the cold temperatures would help bring in more snow. But in fact, Hoffman says it is the opposite.

"At times it can be just too cold to snow, if there's a big arctic air mass you're not gonna see big snowstorms," he said.

And so as our Skywarn 13 team prepares for another winter storm, the exact effects of this one remain to be seen. And so Hoffman, the same goes for the month of March.

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